As a youngster, I always had an insatiable curiosity. And while this got me into a bit of trouble in those early years, I’ve discovered that my inquisitive nature has provided both a channel for discovery and a desire to experience more in life. I was born and raised in the Midwest but I’ve also been fortunate to travel the world and see life, living and humanity with new eyes.
Eventually, as most people are inclined to do, I wanted to share these experiences and my travels with others. My medium of choice is photography…followed closely by food!
As more time has passed I have learned two things. First, there is always something more to learn about photography, which is self-fulfilling for me and my curiosity mentioned above. Second, I know that somewhere there is a perfect picture and if takes the rest of my days I’m going to find it.
As I’ve gotten older and a bit handier with my camera, I’ve discovered two things. One, there is always something more to learn about photography. This is incredibly fulfilling to that curious personality I mentioned. Second, I know that somewhere there is that one perfect picture and if it takes the rest of my days, I’m going to find it.
I’m a tall guy, measuring 6’7” without the slouch, which means I’ve learned a great deal about perspective. When you think about taking photos, it’s all about featuring the subject in the best light, the right angle and the appropriate setting. Or trashing all of those rules and going with what looks fun. I’ve gotten great results from both of these techniques. But here are a few things I’ve learned:
Not everyone is naturally photogenic, of course. But one of the worst things you can do is over-pose everything in sight. I like letting people express their personalities and situate themselves so they’re comfortable. With little direction, it’s fantastic to capture the tiny interactions between a child and his father, or a gentle touch of a hand. You can’t always plan that kind of magic.
Kids have fun doing kid things, not sitting in front of fake autumn tree scenes and “performing” the cheesy smile. It can take time for a little person to warm up to a photographer or a setting, so making this a smooth and comfortable transition is my goal. If they want to kick a ball, let them kick a ball. If they want to blow bubbles, let them blow bubbles. I say let them be kids and let their personalities out to play. And then take lots of photos!
Ok there’s no real insight here. You just have to sneak up on them when they’re having fun and not really paying attention to you. I didn’t plan it this way but pets have really become one of my favorite subjects to photograph. And it sure seems to make their owners’ happy.